Shrinking world


She forgot herself, her old job, what she used to do.

Did I really work?

Did I do all that?

She forgot her relatives, confused her siblings with her children.

She forgot her in-laws, knowing they were still familiar.

She forgot her children, forgetting she is a mother.

She forgot her husband, perhaps not surprising, he’s been gone many years.

She forgot her grandchildren, doesn’t recognize them.

She remembers how to eat, how to go to bed, how to rise in the morning.

She remembers how to wash herself, though she confuses the shampoo with the body wash.

She remembers numbers, but just barely gets up to ten.

She remembers to smile and she smiles often, everyday.

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12 thoughts on “Shrinking world”

    1. It’s nearly five years since my mother died. As you know, she had advanced dementia. I felt, still feel, that in many ways it was a privilege to be with her as she journeyed to the end of her life, casting memories aside like unnecessary possessions, life reduced to existing. Like your mother, she could still smile, and her last words were ‘thank-you’.
      It was however also a huge strain. Every day I worried about her; worried about how well she was being cared for, her awareness, how kind or unkind people were when dealing with her. People talk feeling like a about a knife is twisting inside them. That was how my anxiety about my mother felt.
      I think by being with her, showing her unconditional love, was the single most important thing. People with dementia may lose the power to communicate, to recognise or remember, they do not lose the power to feel joy or sorrow.

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  1. And, these pieces that went missing in her memories will never come back, and as dementia progressed, she will end up being able to do less and less, to the point that she’d needed help on the simplest matters of life like going to the bathrooms, but we still love her dearly…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You have described MY mother’s life right now too. Sadness seems to be creeping in more now, but the smiles are still there every day. It’s so sad seeing their world shrinking before our very eyes, but such a privilege to be part of that smaller world. My mom is so looking forward to the day when she “steps over into Glory” and finds it Home.

    Liked by 1 person

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